Genre: Afrobeats, Afro-fusion, Afropop
Date of Release: May 6, 2022
Producers: Ktizo, Blaisebeatz, Blind & Frankmoses, Dera the boy, P.Priime, and Tempoe
Length: 20 minutes 47 seconds
Features: 2 – Tempoe, Ktizo
Label: KVLT / The Plug Entertainment
This time last year, rising Nigerian singer, rapper, and songwriter Victony was going through what is probably the darkest period of his life, after a ghastly motor accident took the life of his friend Doyin and left him and a couple of his other friends with severe injuries.
He had barely finished revelling in the acclaim and fondness his first project Saturn – EP earned him when the fated incident took place. The album’s intoxicating 6-tracks had announced Victony’s preeminence, and fast-forward a few months after the accident, his collaboration with DMW star Mayorkun became one of the most played songs on Nigerian radio. Mayorkun may possess proprietary claim to “Holy Father,” but it was Vicotny’s hook and vocals that made it an earworm.
“If I had died in that accident, life would’ve gone on, and everybody would’ve forgotten about me,” Victony tells Apple Music, following the release of his latest body of work “Outlaw-EP.”
“My music would live on—but life goes on, right? He continued.
The irony of life means no one can have it any other way. The world cannot pause for anyone, so why not own precious time?
Wasting no time to express the darkness within his heart “Outlaw-EP” opens with the eponymous Ktizo produced “Outlaw,” highlighting his acceptation for being a self-imposed outlaw. Nothing incriminating, just his unconventional style and journey to superstardom.
“Saturn-EP” had been deeply suggestive of a turbulent mind masking behind a sweet voice, with lines, rhymes, and metaphorical expressions reminiscent of rappers. But only alpha Outlaws (Outlaw is another name for Victony fans) will know prior to now, that Victony was originally a rapper, citing American legends Drake and Kendrick Lamar as major influences.
“Lonely ass boy so me is a favourite pronoun,” he sings on “Outlaw.”
On the shallower “Chop & Slide” he sings of a love interest who wouldn’t commit to nothing beyond pleasures, whereas he’s down for something more serious.
Speaking about the track, he said: “I don’t even know why I wrote about that, honestly, because I haven’t even been in such situations. But I’m very, very imaginative with my writing.” Again, highlighting his penchant for being radical.
On the P.Prime produced “Apllo” which is one of the project’s two lead singles, Victony flexes his vocals over samples from DJ Clock’s ‘Pluto (Remember You),’ a record he claims has always been stuck with him from childhood. The track is perfect for escapism, especially given its Amapiano appeal.
As the curtain folds on “Apollo,” Victony’s lyrical rawness reaches peak on “All Power” – a potential club banger littered with scampish lyrics like “Theresa thief my heart oh/ And run away oh/” and “Ofe Nsala you cook, e done done./”
In Eastern Nigeria, where Victony hails from, Ofe Nsala is a renowned cuisine, a cultural soup delicacy. It made its way into Nigerian pop culture as a slang for describing something very delicious, after popular Nigerian musician Duncan Mighty—also from Southeastern Nigeria—included it in his chorus during his guest appearance on DMW’s 2018 smash hit “Aza” featuring Davido and Peruzzi.
Pretty much like “Apollo” and “All Power” “Jolene” is upbeat and dance-inviting. Producers Ktizo and Hoodini had to import a choir to the studio to sing part of the chorus (Victony tells Apple Music), paving the way for the enchanting acoustic effect that’s heard throughout the song.
On “Soweto” Victony gives composition credits to Tempoe, and sings about a girl he wants to woo, without really caring if she feels the same way. It’s Caribbean rhythm, embellished by soulful flutes and whistles make the record standout.
Finally, “Kolomental,” the last track of the project and the second lead single closes off “Outlaw—EP” in similar fashion “Outlaw” set it off, deeper lyricism with echoes of melancholy and emotional turbulence. The track paints a part picture of what the singer has been through in the last couple of months.
Overall, “Outlaw-EP” is another promising project from one of Afrobeats’ insanely talented prodigies. It’s not as diverse and as rich in sound and message as his first EP “Saturn,” as Victony leans towards more party anthems in a bid to charm the typical Nigerian music listener.
Although he’s shown over the years he can be quite the polymath, time will tell whether this radical creative transformation — sacrificing the expression of clear and deep thoughts — for ordinary feel-good music is worth it.